Historical background to the document of "Speech of the President of the Republic of Azerbaijan at the reception on honor of the Lebanese Prime Minsiter Rafik al-Hariri" (Baku, February 11, 1998)

The relationship and cooperation in the spheres of economy and politics have been insured at a sufficient high level of leaderships between the Middle East country Lebanon and the Republic of Azerbaijan. Lebanon recognized the independence of the Republic of Azerbaijan on December of 1991. Both sides established diplomatic relations on September 18, 1992. (http://www.mfa.gov.az/)

The Lebanese Prime minister between 1992-2004 Rafik al-Hariri visited Azerbaijan on 11-12 February, 1998. A few agreements on cooperation were signed for the first time between two countries during his visit.

Azerbaijan President Heydar Aliyev spoke about prospects of Azerbaijani-Lebanese cooperation at the reception in Hariri`s honor, on February 11, 1998. He said that both countries had common features that experienced devastating wars on their territories at different periods.

Heydar Aliyev stated he was pleased with Hariri`s declaration on the territorial integrity of Azerbaijan and said he wanted Lebanon to use its opportunities for the settlement of the Armenia-Azerbaijan Nagorno (Upper) Karabakh conflict.

In this speech, Heydar Aliyev pointed that Lebanon was a beautiful place for tourists, but a hard and complicated area to manage political processes there. As a result of this contradiction, Rafik al-Hariri was plotted and killed in Beirut on February 14, 2004. Azerbaijan President Ilham Aliyev condemned this murder in his condolences. ("Azerbaijan" newspapaer, February 15, 2005)

An honorary Consul of Azerbaijan acts in Lebanon. The consul carried out proper work to secure Azerbaijanis living in Lebanon during the Israeli-Lebanon/Hezbollah conflict in summer of 2006. (www.trend.az/www.apa.az)

There`s a considerable Armenian community in Lebanon, having an influence on socio-political situation. There also existed Armenian terrorist organizations, the members of which participated in the war of aggression against Azerbaijan in Nagorno (Upper) Karabakh .

Historical background was updated on December of 2006.